DirectorMario Bava Film seriesBeyond the Door trilogy LanguageEnglish
WriterLamberto Bava, Dardano Sacchetti Release date12 August 1977 (1977-08-12) Music directorWalter Martino, Alessandro Centofanti, Dino Cappa CastDaria Nicolodi (Dora Baldini), John Steiner (Bruno Baldini), David Colin Jr. (Marco), Ivan Rassimov (Dr. Aldo Spidini), Paul Costello (?), Nicola Salerno (?) Similar moviesMad Max: Fury Road, John Wick, Taken 3, Crimson Peak, Poltergeist, Blackhat
TaglineA new look at the face of evil.
Shock (original title: Schock) is a 1977 Italian horror film directed by Mario Bava. It was Bava's last theatrical feature before he died of a heart attack in 1980. The film stars Daria Nicolodi, John Steiner and David Colin, Jr. It was released in the United States as Beyond the Door II.
Dora Baldini (Daria Nicolodi), her son Marco (David Colin Jr.) and her new husband Bruno Baldini (John Steiner) move into Dora's former home, from her first marriage, after Dora is released from a mental institution following the mysterious death of Dora's abusive first husband. With Bruno away as a commercial airline pilot, Dora is left alone with her son Marco and her shattered memory of the events of her husband's death, caused by extensive electroshock treatment she received while institutionalized. Her insanity grows when she believes that her son has become possessed by the ghost of his deceased father, leading to Dora learning the truth about her first husband's death: she murdered him after he forcibly injected her with heroin and LSD. When she contacted Bruno for help, he arranged for her dead husband's body to be dumped out in the ocean while arranging for Dora to be placed in an insane asylum, as the drugs injected into her caused her to have a nervous breakdown. Now killing her new husband, Dora is compelled by her husband's ghost (and her guilt) to commit suicide. The ending shows Marco, the sole survivor, having tea with his parents' ghosts (who are invisible).
Daria Nicolodi as Dora Baldini
John Steiner as Bruno Baldini
David Colin Jr. as Marco
Ivan Rassimov as Dr. Aldo Spidini
Nicola Salerno as Carlo (uncredited)
Shock was released in Italy on August 12, 1977. In the United States, it was re-titled Beyond the Door II, presented as a sequel to Ovidio Assonitis's 1974 possession film, Beyond the Door; however, the films were not linked in narrative or content, and the decision to change the title was solely for marketing purposes in America.
From a contemporary review, Scott Meek (Monthly Film Bulletin) described the film as "only a minor work from a past master of Italian commercial cinema, this shocker shows flashes of real style and of effectively sardonic humour." The review concluded that "IThe post-Exorcist possession crazy is now so burdened with inferior product that it is a pity that Bava's contribution should have been delayed in reaching Britain. It proves, despite its faults, a good deal more entertaining than many of its American bedfellows."
From retrospective reviews, AllMovie called it "perhaps one of the more conventional offerings from a man whom many consider the founding father of Italian horror", though it "still bears the trademark style and technical trickery of Mario Bava's previous efforts".